Xinhua chief missing in Britain?

The Telegraph reports that Wan Wuyi, director of China’s main domestic news service, has gone missing after a training course at Britain’s Oxford University: He is said to have gone missing after telling colleagues he was suffering a bad back so would have to delay his flight home after finishing the training last month. Rumours ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.

The Telegraph reports that Wan Wuyi, director of China's main domestic news service, has gone missing after a training course at Britain's Oxford University:

The Telegraph reports that Wan Wuyi, director of China’s main domestic news service, has gone missing after a training course at Britain’s Oxford University:

He is said to have gone missing after telling colleagues he was suffering a bad back so would have to delay his flight home after finishing the training last month.

Rumours on the Chinese internet suggested Mr Wan may have decided to flee after his reporting landed him on the wrong side of China’s leaders. There were also claims he may have been under investigation for corruption. Mr Wan’s wife is said to have already emigrated to the UK….

A spokesman for Xinhua refused to confirm or deny whether Mr Wan had defected. He said: "We do not know the situation clearly. You should keep an eye on the news."

But a Chinese official based in Britain rejected suggestions Mr Wan had gone missing. "This is totally wrong. It is a rumour," said Hei Dalong, the Xinhua bureau chief in London. "Mr Wan is at my home. He has been ill for 50 days and the doctors say he is recovering but only slowly. He cannot travel at this time."

Very fishy. Wan would be a pretty major defection if this turns out to be true. Stay tuned. 

Hat tip: The Diplomat

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

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